Thursday, May 27th, 2010
This Is Happening
LCD Soundsystem at The Kool Haus in Toronto
Frank YangI was there. In 2010. On a Tuesday night in May at the Kool Haus in Toronto. I was there when LCD Soundsystem, here from New York City, played what might have been their last show in the city. I saw them support of their third album, This Is Happening. I was there when LCD Soundsystem took my recollection of the only other time I’ve seen them, at Austin City Limits in 2007 which I found, maybe because of the early afternoon set time, kind of passive and unengaging but still entertaining. I was there when they showed me how very wrong I was, except for the entertaining part. And even that was gross understatement. Because LCD Soundsystem, at least on this night, was nothing short of amazing.
I was there when despite being surrounded by a legion of players and a forest of gear and despite looking more like a high school gym teacher than a rock star, James Murphy made bellowing into an old-school, CB-style microphone with either his talk-singing or Bowie-crooning vocals the most riveting thing you’ve ever seen. Never mind working the drums or the cowbell. I saw the rock kids and the dance kids and the punkers and the ravers and the jocks and the hipsters came together for almost two hours of insanely tight and irresistibly rhythmic common ground and make it feel like this discofied union is how things should always be. I heard James Murphy make the case for LCD as music for moving the ass while stimulating the brain. I heard James Murphy make the case for LCD as music for deep thought while shaking the ass. I was there when he made the case for being old as being awesome. I saw LCD Soundsystem turn a concert into a party.
I heard Murphy touchingly dedicate a stirring rendition of “All My Friends” to legendary and beloved Toronto artist and impresario Will Munro, who passed away from cancer this weekend. I was there when they busted out the laser show. I was there during the encore when things got a little rough up front and Murphy had to stop “Losing My Edge” to let security do their thing. I saw him ask the audience, while emphasizing that he was coming from the most positive place, to bring their enthusiasm down just a notch so as to not hurt anyone. I was there when they closed out with “New York I Love You” and its “Empire State of Mind” coda and despite this being Toronto, we felt that love and returned it.
I was there. And it was awesome.
Photos: LCD Soundsystem @ The Kool Haus – May 25, 2010
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “Drunk Girls”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “All My Friends”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “Someone Great”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “North American Scum”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “Tribulations”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “Daft Punk Is Playing”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “Movement”
Video: LCD Soundsystem – “Losing My Edge”
MySpace: LCD Soundsystem
Baltimore-based but Anglo-influenced synth-pop trio Future Islands will be at Double Double Land (209 Augusta in Kensington Market – it’s okay, I had to look it up too) on June 7. Their debut album In The Air came out earlier this month. Apparently they’re quite good live, and are Guardian-approved. The Santa Barbara Independent has an interview.
Paste talks to Broken Social Scene drummer Justin Peroff. BSS play the Toronto Islands on June 19. The trailer for the Bruce MacDonald-helmed Broken-themed/set/soundtracked-yet-fictional film This Movie Is Broken is now available to view; the movie opens on June 25, details over at Exclaim.
Trailer: This Movie Is Broken
Carl Newman of The New Pornographers may now reside in America, but he’s still Canadian enough to teach The New York Times a thing or two about maple syrup. The New Pornographers are at the Sound Academy on June 15.
NME reports that Arcade Fire’s third album will be entitled The Suburbs and be out on August 2 in the UK, presumably August 3 in North America. It looks like this. The single for the title track is out today. It is streaming at their website. They play the Toronto Islands on August 14.
Video: Chromeo – “Night By Night”